Live Video Marketing: YouTube Live vs Facebook Live

This post is an excerpt from our Digital Marketing Conference in Los Angeles. The conference was a rich environment for digital marketers to openly discuss tactics for building a better online presence and tracking results. All of the content from the Digital Marketing Conference is available as Digital Marketing Videos

Here are some key takeaways from the Live Video Marketing panel:

  • People are influenced by other people
    People are interested in learning trends and topics from people they are interested in. Consider creating your live videos with an influencer, this can expand your social reach as increase engagement.
  • Consider the pros and cons of each platform
    Facebook Live generally has better video quality, but Facebook makes it difficult to share that video on other platforms once the broadcast is finished. YouTube offers better monetization and archival opportunities.
  • Audio is important
    Live videos, especially event-driven live videos, should have clear audio. Without clear audio, you may risk having an unusable video.

What are some of the best practices and innovative strategies of digital live video?

When you think about the audience that you want to reach, how do you reach them? We can always put a great spokesperson or a customer with a spokesperson and talk about a product or a brand, which could be interesting but influencers take things to another level. People are interested in trends and topics and are influenced by people that they are interested in or would like to get advice from. This is what an influencer can be. We work with influencers to co-create content or to publish content that they are creating around an interesting trend or topic. –Amisha Gandhi, SAP

We launched the first live film festival on Facebook so we reached out to different motor-themed filmmakers who made short films anywhere from 10 to 45 minutes in length. We did a deal with them that would allow us to stream that live so it becomes more like a traditional broadcast platform, but we featured them in the comments live. It was pre-planned, event programming. So everyone knows that 11 AM is biker movie Sunday and we promote that across all of our channels, through our newsletters, on our social, everywhere. We use Wirecast to stream that through the API and then you can interact live with the filmmakers. –Zack Coffman, One World Studios Ltd.

When we talk about all different types of content marketing and inbound marketing, we know that there are multiple platforms that can do a lot of different things and streaming video is no different. It's a matter of knowing your audience and what the demographics are of the people that you are trying to reach. Where are the people you want to interact with? –David May, Chapman University

Is there a winner or a clear leader in the field at the moment between YouTube Live and Facebook Live?

When you use Facebook Live, your live video shows up in all of your follower's feeds more. –Amisha Gandhi

For us, we use both but we have used Facebook Live more because the video quality is much higher and so when we take a look at these live videos when we are done, we can put them in other social media channels as well. YouTube compresses so we lost some of the quality and couldn't reuse the footage. Facebook also has set up the algorithms so that when you use Facebook Live, your live video shows up in all of your follower's feeds more. It gives you that bump, but YouTube also has a built-in audience and it is easy to share outside of the YouTube platform. Those are some of the pros and cons for us. –Amisha Gandhi, SAP

The way that people engage on YouTube is search-driven. –Brian Nickerson

I think Facebook Live is the winner because the two things you need are an audience and great content. Facebook already has the audience and now people are going there to create great content. Building a huge audience, especially in live, is almost impossible for anyone else to do. As you compare Facebook Live to YouTube, which has had a live product for a long time, you don't see the same success. The way that people engage on YouTube is much more search-driven or driven by a particular creator who they love and who they want to engage with. It's not driven as much by let me browse around and see who is live. However, we are hearing from creators that YouTube is a better place to store your library of content. Facebook has made it hard to film a video on Facebook Live and then publish it onto YouTube as well. Some creators are actually thinking about, "Do we double record our live presentation into both platforms?" mainly because they are thinking about how to have that archival footage live in a place where they can have a monetization opportunity, which is available on YouTube and not on Facebook at the moment. –Brian Nickerson, MagicLinks

What advice would you give to anyone either embarking in live video marketing or developing a platform or content in live video?

Any time there is an early stage on a new platform, there is an opportunity for first mover advantage. My number one piece of advice to a creator would be to pick up platforms and embrace them, go for it from the start. If you take Instagram for example and the launch of their stories. In Instagram, if you are doing those stories and doing video, then the algorithms are going to start taking over and you are going to show up more for your friends and people who are not your friends yet but might be interested in your content. From an influencer perspective, embrace it and be early. –Brian Nickerson, MagicLinks

Giveaways keep people interested and intrigued and they help grow an audience. –Zack Coffman

There are a lot of resources online where you can sort of raise your level of professionalism of your hosts or yourself (if you are the host). It's pretty standard stuff, but if you can learn a few tricks it can really engage. One trick we did, was give a "giveaway" whenever things started to get a little quiet on the live platform we were on. Giveaways keep people interested and intrigued and they help grow an audience. –Zack Coffman, One World Studios Ltd.

How do you incorporate live stream videos into events that are already happening? What are the basic needs that you need in order to live stream?

I think audio is really important especially when you are at an event. We learned the hard way, where we didn't have the plug-in mic to the iPhone and things like that so we actually ran out and got the plug-ins and put it into the microphone and even though it was so noisy, we got clear audio. There are lots of different attachments that you can get for iPad, iPhone, Android devices, etc. Without a quality sound, your video is really unusable. –Amisha Gandhi, SAP

If you are unwilling to put in the time or the money into your live video, the quality will be lower. –David May

Ask the stakeholders who are asking for that experience with a live event about the kind of experience they want. This is one of those things where you can spend nothing and you can spend a ton of money, and you get what you pay for. If you are unwilling to put in the time or the money into your live video, the quality will be lower. –David May, Chapman University